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Picture of Froo Froo
posted
Ever hired a contractor for a home remodel who did not have liability insurance? What if his sub contractors did not have liability insurance? If the contractor appears to be highly recommended would this lack of coverage give you pause to hire him? Though the likelihood of personal injury might be slight, it is always a possibility in the biz which is why I am curious about your experience if it relates to this topic.
 
Posts: 18460 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Jewel
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The lack of liability insurance would cause me to eliminate the contractor from consideration for the job. Insurance isn't that expensive so I'd have to surmise he either couldn't manage the financial side of his business very well OR he has a past that disqualifies him from being eligible for the insurance. Either way, he'd either have to buy a policy and show me the coverage paperwork in order to stay in the running.
 
Posts: 8188 | Registered: Sep 18, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I can tell you that here in Texas if you hire unlicensed contractors... general or a trade... and there is s hiccup... your homeowners policy does not have to pay.
To be licensed here in Texas we have to carry a certain range of liability insur. ( min of $100,000 per... but that is awfully low... )
Peace of mind isn't worth the risk of working with non compliant contractors.

Becky
 
Posts: 4454 | Location: Texas | Registered: Mar 29, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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I neglected to state that he has a state contractor's license (we have the no.) and has been in the biz for 20 years. He also ranks in the top 30 percent in our area. I don't know yet what the local law is in regards to obtaining a general contractor license w/o having liability insurance.

Frankly, we are becoming discouraged about this whole process. We gave up on two other contractors for various reasons.
 
Posts: 18460 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Jewel
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I hear ya, Froo (from she who just got quoted $45k for a bath remodel).
 
Posts: 8188 | Registered: Sep 18, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Froo go to your state's licensing page and see what the requirements are...
If he is required to have insurance or a bond ... Maybe he doesn't have to carry the liability if all his subs have theirs. And he keeps that documented... We do that with a GC here... With each job our insurance company faxes them a copy for their files. The office manager mentioned someone coming by to audit them for those kinds of records...
You don't want to be the last man standing if something life changing happens on a job site.... You could lose badly.

Becky
 
Posts: 4454 | Location: Texas | Registered: Mar 29, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Did he give you a good explanation as to why he doesn't carry liability insurance? Personally, I wouldn't risk it. Injury claims can get really expensive and even if they are rare, why take the chance?
 
Posts: 490 | Registered: Mar 04, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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CORRECTION. What he doesn't carry is workmen's comp.
 
Posts: 18460 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Belstone
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That's his risk, not yours...the way I see it, if he injures himself and cannot work, he isn't able to collect, but you won't have to pay either. I would not hire anyone who did not carry liability insurance...even if your homeowners covered it, why would you want a claim?


**Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass...it's about learning to dance in the rain**
 
Posts: 3637 | Location: Here, by the grace of God... | Registered: Jan 24, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
. He also ranks in the top 30 percent in our area. I don't know yet what the local law is in regards to obtaining a general contractor license w/o having liability insurance.


Up until you said "workman's comp" you had me doubting about how a reputable person for 30 years in the business would not WANT to have liability insurance. That was a big red light for me.
So, DOES he have liability insurance?
 
Posts: 1594 | Registered: Jun 23, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of joyluck
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Here in Canada one can buy a homeowner's worker's comp. policy which is what I did last year when I hired a tradesman who didn't have it. I can hire people all year and once a year pay according to the payroll.

I think this may be misunderstood by tradesmen as it's not very expensive according to someone I hire regularly who has it. I think with the person who didn't have it he can't be bothered with the paperwork and also has a crew which would perhaps increase the cost substantially. It cost me less than 1% of the payroll cost.

I wouldn't hire anyone without being insured.


Lucky

"I have always had an aversion to the concepts of in style and out of style." ~Rose Tarlow

Inspirational pics: http://inspiration4u.shutterfly.com/
 
Posts: 12613 | Location: north of 50 in Canada | Registered: Feb 08, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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Sorry, DH tells me that he said he has liability coverage. Of course we will request documentation. What we're concerned is in regards to him not having workmen's comp. for himself and possibly the subs. My research states that at least in some states, a licensed general contractor does not need to obtain workmen's comp if he has less then three employees. It appears he subs out the plumber and electrician and we are not sure if he does the carpentry and tile work himself. Also, DH will call our insurance company for advice too. His on line biz profiles indicate zero employees. He also stated that he has reliable subs he has used for years.

To add to our concerns is the fact we do not yet have a drawing particularly in regards to the shower design where we have some questions.

As many of you already know and others have no doubt guessed, this is our first professional remodeling experience and it is stressful vs exciting thus far. I/We can't get over how vague or lax general contractors can be. Though they may offer a boatload of happy referral clients, one has to wonder how many of them put blind trust in their contractor's hands and came out unscathed. This is not to suggest that at some point, a homeowner has to trust, but so much money is at stake including potential lawsuits. We don't want to scare this contractor off and he has been understanding thus far, but I hope and pray we won't go too far to spook him but far enough for our peace of mind. This is definitely a balancing act.

Any words of wisdom from experienced customers to those in the biz is welcome and I appreciate everyone's imput thus far.
 
Posts: 18460 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If and when you do decide to go with your contractor, keep in mind 2 things:
1. They are not necessarily designers and if you are not sure just how you want your room to look, you'd better have a strong idea in mind rather than leave it up to them.
2. I have known people who are ready to sign a contractor for a said amount to factor in a clause that includes "extra monies" if they bring the work in on a designated date of your choice. Instead of the usual excuses for weeks delays, this might be an incentive in case of weather problems, sickness, unexpected problems with the room that could arise, etc.
At the very least, your job would be given first consideration rather than someone else' if all things are equal.
It's an exciting time and things could go wrong of course, but these upfront ideas might help keep the agita to a minumum.
Have a fun time with this new bathroom and please post pix.
 
Posts: 1594 | Registered: Jun 23, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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Good points. As a matter of fact, DH drew up plans to email to the contractor tomorrow so that we are all on the same page. I also will take a drive to the local glass shop to make inquiries regarding the shower though I know they can not say anything definite without working with the newly redone shower. The last thing we want is a misunderstanding or having to explain what's what while the sub or contractor awaits our spur of the moment decision.

I will consult with the contractor regarding the completion date too as I plan on ordering everything well in advance. Weather delays should not become an issue short of a freakish tornado, hurricane, earthquake, flood or sink hole.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Froo Froo,
 
Posts: 18460 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You should definitely include a complete by date in your contract to ensure your contractor stays on top of the job. This is especially important if your contractor is juggling several jobs at once to make sure your job is a priority.
 
Posts: 83 | Registered: Apr 17, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of cocok
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You have to really trust your contractor. I only have a couple that I really like to work with, and several that I refuse to work with. I think it is kind of like picking a DR, or a dentist, or a designer, or anyone that is on an intimate basis with you. What I look for is someone who is very detail oriented. Very specific. I want an accounting down to the penny, and down to the minute of each worker. I want someone who will be on the job every day checking on the work. I want someone who will make things right in a timely manner. Someone who has integrity.

Good luck in your search, Froo Froo. It is hard.
 
Posts: 7086 | Registered: Apr 08, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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In my town, we cannot get a permit unless the contractor is registerd with the village. My last contractor had neglected to pay something and had to run over to the village office and pay it before they would issue a permit to begin our patio. Then, when the contractor did not come back to complete some work, I called the village. They called him and he was over real quick then!
When I used people through word of mouth insurance was never even discussed.
 
Posts: 419 | Location: Illinois | Registered: May 22, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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DH called our homeowner's insurance company and we learned we are covered under an umbrella policy. Check that worry off our list.

Speaking of an estimate down to the penny, that was our hope, but we'd be happy with a breakdown for each phase. It appears this isn't general practice unless it's a commercial job vs a home.
 
Posts: 18460 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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